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Jewel: Folksinger

June 1, 2007

I was watching a tv promo yesterday for a summer show that puts celebrities in stock cars and has them race NASCAR drivers. Jewel, multi-platinum singer/songwriter, looks up at one point and says, "I bet you never thought you'd get beat by a folksinger" (or maybe something more grammatically correct - that's how we would say it in Indiana). It was interesting that after all of her success as a pop star, she still considers herself a folkie, as if singing in stadiums diminishes her credibility as an artist. I appreciate that (she started out on solo guitar and did an acoustic tour after Who Will Save Your Soul became so huge, so she has our kind of street cred). You go Jewel!

Posted by Ann VerWiebe at June 1, 2007 11:07 AM


I don't know anything about Jewel. I know I have always enjoyed the Folk-Ballad component of rockers like Led Zeppelin (Bron-Y-Aur Stomp), Elvis Presley (Young and Beautiful, Blue Moon of Kentucky) and The Beatles (Mother Nature's Son).

NOTE: Bron-Yr-Aur means "golden breast" or "breast of gold" in Welsh. It means "breast" as in hillside of gold. It's pronounced "Bron-rar."

Posted by: Richard Schletty at June 2, 2007 12:08 AM

Somewhere between your phonetics and the original Richard - maybe bronerour or bronerower. Unless you're from Cardiff in which case you're quite right.

Posted by: Huw Pryce at June 3, 2007 7:27 PM

Richard--I don't know much about Led Zeppelin (besides Stairway to Heaven), so I'll have to take your word for it. And, thankfully, we have Huw as our "resident" Welshman to keep us on track! I went to Wales once. I bought a tea towel with a picture of the Prince and (at the time) Princess.

Posted by: Ann E VerWiebe at June 4, 2007 9:15 AM

Ha! I saw the TV ad last night. It was a jewel of a comment.

Posted by: Richard Schletty at June 5, 2007 9:04 PM

Huw: I know nothing of Cymreig dialects (or dialectics, for that matter). I just copy and paste from web pages to give an impression of smartness. We ought to come up with a name for this sort of behavior. Let's see...

data trawling
instant scholar
HTTP (Hardly Tested Truth Pebbles)
borrowed solutions
FAQ (Fairly Approximate Quips)
information highway robbery
virtual librarian
artificial intelligence
a cut-and-paste above the rest
Full of JIT (Just in Time)
PhD (Phony Dendrites)
wisdom by proxy
enlightenment by google

Posted by: Richard Schletty at June 5, 2007 9:41 PM

I really like jewel when she keeps to her roots which she always said was folk music. I care for her more "pop" tunes but I admire her as a folk singer.

Posted by: Michele Pfaff at June 6, 2007 10:08 AM

I have listened to Jewels music for years. I highly respect her poetry and I think her voice is as beautiful as the way she sings her songs.
I read she has had amazing life experiences such as living in a VW bus in San Diego with her mother, and her grandfather helped draft the Alaska state constitution.

In the spirit of the Fourth of July, I think “Life Uncommon” so encompasses the sentiment.

Life Uncommon
don't worry mother, it'll be alright
and don't worry sister, say your prayers and sleep tight
it'll be fine lover of mine
it'll be just fine

lend your voices only to sounds of freedom
no longer lend your strength to that which you wish to be free from
fill your lives with love and bravery
and you shall lead a life uncommon

I've heard your anguish,
I've heard your hearts cry out
we are tired, we are weary, but we aren't worn out
set down your chains, until only faith remains
set down your chains

and lend your voices only to sounds of freedom
no longer lend your strength to that which you wish to be free from
fill your lives with love and bravery
and we shall lead a life uncommon

there are plenty of people who pray for peace
but if praying were enough it would have come to be
let your words enslave no one and the heavens will hush themselves
to hear our voices ring out clear
with sounds of freedom
sounds of freedom

come on you unbelievers, move out of the way
there is a new army coming and we are armed with faith
to live, we must give
to live

and lend our voices only to sounds of freedom
no longer lend our strength to that which we wish to be free from
fill your lives with love and bravery
and we shall lead...

lend our voices only to sounds of freedom
no longer lend our strength to that which we wish to be free from
fill your lives with love and bravery

Posted by: Shannon McDaniel at July 3, 2007 6:24 PM

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